Daily Buzz: A Big CMS Shift

WordPress is making some major changes to its content management system in the coming weeks. Are you ready? Also: The success of branded Facebook Groups is helping ease the pain for marketers.

After more than 15 years in development, the widely used blogging platform WordPress is introducing version 5.0 very shortly, the largest upgrade in its long history.

Not that everyone’s excited about it.

The developers of WordPress decided to go bold by implementing a new editor technology that effectively represents a Band-Aid rip from the past. Gutenberg, a tool that is more visually oriented than the classic editor, has received less-than-rave reviews, but WordPress sees it as a necessary change to modernize the platform, which is facing increased competition from newer content management systems.

Gutenberg relies on a block-style system, rather than a traditional text-based format. This makes it easy to add visual elements to an article but adds layers of complexity, and your plug-ins will need to be updated. (Business 2 Community has some details, if you’re curious.) The new system bears some similarity to the editors on Medium, Ghost, and Squarespace.

You can give the new editor a whirl on WordPress’ Testing Gutenberg website to get a feel for things. But for those who would prefer to stick with the tried-and-true, there’s a plug-in that keeps the classic editor in place, so you can maintain the latest version of WordPress without getting to know Gutenberg.

Facebook Groups: Still Growing

There’s been a lot of bad news coming out of Facebook in recent weeks, but the platform still has plenty of upside for marketers.

According to Marketing Land, many marketers are benefiting from using Facebook Groups. The piece highlights the work done by the parenting website Grown & Flown and the exercise bicycle brand Peloton. Lisa Heffernan, one of Grown & Flown’s founders, says the approach has allowed it to nurture a targeted audience.

“We know what parents want to hear about. We know what’s on their mind so we can create content, find experts, find writers who will speak to what we already know our audience wants,” she says. “That’s a huge business goal, because who wants to publish things that no one wants to read?”

Other Links of Note

Outdated technology doesn’t always die quickly.  Case in point: the fax machine. The Atlantic looks into where you’re likely to still find one in use.

Workers are putting off retirement far longer than they once did. Harvard Business Review suggests that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

”Member visits are the way.” Eric Lanke, president and CEO of the National Fluid Power Association, shares an anecdote that shows the importance of in-person interactions.

WordPress’ new Gutenberg editor. (Handout photo)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a senior editor for Associations Now, a former newspaper guy, and a man who is dangerous when armed with a good pun. MORE

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